Blues lose Woodcock for must win Chiefs clash

The Blues will be without All Black prop Tony Woodcock for their must win Super Rugby match against the Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday.

Woodcock has failed to pass a concussion test so Blues coach Sir John Kirwan has brought Ofa Tu’ungafasi into the starting line up as one of six changes to the team that lost to the Waratahs.

Daniel Bowden retains the first five-eighth role and halfback Jamison Gibson-Park which pushes Jimmy Cowan down to the replacements.

Former All Black Sevens star Pita Ahki will make his season debut for the Blues after recovering from an early-season foot injury and will partner George Moala in the centrefield.

All Black Charlie Faumuina has been bracketed at prop with Angus Ta’avao while Patrick Tuipulotu moves to the reserves with Josh Bekhuis and Hayden Triggs paired in the second-row.

In other news Manawatu halfback Jamie Booth has joined the Blues as injury cover for Bryn Hall until the end of May.

Blues

Ofa Tu’ungafasi, Keven Mealamu, Charlie Faumuina (Angus Ta’avao), Josh Bekhuis, Hayden Triggs, Steven Luatua, Brendon O’Connor, Jerome Kaino, Jamison Gibson-Park, Dan Bowden, Tevita Li, George Moala, Pita Ahki, Frank Halai, Charles Piutau.

Replacements: James Parsons, Sam Prattley, Angus Ta’avao, Patrick Tuipulotu, Luke Braid, Jimmy Cowan, Ihaia West, Francis Saili

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